Government participation in the regulation of cyberspace does not automatically restrict freedom of information or self expression on the internet, Russian Communications Minister Igor Shchyogolev said.
Shchyogolev is partipating in the London Conference on Cyberspace, where the main topic at the forum is centered around two approaches on regulating the internet.
Shchyogolev said that Russia and a group of other countries have already developed and presented a series of proposals aimed at creating a “Code of Conduct” in the space of modern technology. He added that this code may be adopted as a convention under the auspices of the UN.
U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden, speaking by video link from Washington to the conference, opposed the position of those countries that “seek an international legal instrument that would lead to exclusive government control over internet resources.”
“But this, in our view, would lead to a fragmented internet, one that does not connect people but divides them, a stagnant cyberspace, not an innovative one, and ultimately a less secure cyberspace with less trust among nations,” Biden said.
According to Shchyogolev, intervention at the national and international level is necessary in many areas, including the fight against child pornography, leakage of personal data or DDoS-attacks on government computer networks.
“We believe that this kind of dialogue can be conducted under the auspices of the UN or the International Telecommunication Union because it has its own 150-year history and its priorities,” Shchyogolev said.
“We are convinced that it is not possible to block and censor the internet, otherwise it would lose its meaning. All the benefits of the internet lie in the free flow of information,” the minister added.
The two-day international London Conference on Cyberspace is being hosted by the British Foreign Office.